Hunter Unregulated and Alluvial Water Sharing Plan open for feedback

Media release | 17 January 2022

The Department of Planning and Environment is seeking feedback from water users and other key stakeholders on the new draft Hunter Unregulated and Alluvial water sharing plan.

Executive Director of Water Planning, Giselle Howard said water sharing plans are valid for 10 years, once finalised, so it’s important the local community and stakeholders are informed and provide feedback while the plan is in draft form.

“The 2018-2020 drought in the Hunter Valley highlighted the importance of managing our water resources and sharing them equitably during dry times,” Ms Howard said.

“The draft plan aims to manage water in sustainable ways including reducing access to water during future dry periods, when salinity levels in tidal zones can reach critical levels and groundwater levels become very low.

“Other proposed rules will help to improve environmental releases from Chichester Dam.

“We’re keen to hear from a variety of stakeholders to ensure the new Hunter Unregulated and Alluvial water sharing plan balances the needs of commercial water users, the community and the environment.”

People have until Sunday 27 February to make their submission on the draft plan.

“This process allows us to find and address any concerns about the proposed water sharing plan,” Ms Howard said.

“We want to hear diverse perspectives on the draft water sharing plan and its socio- economic, cultural and environmental effects.”

All feedback will be considered before the final water sharing plan comes into effect in July 2022.

To read the draft water sharing plan visit: dpie.nsw.gov.au/hunter-valley-wsp